Unknown hackers have released a large cache of files stolen from notorious Italy-based spyware firm Hacking Team, revealing that the company enabled its clients to hack computers and monitor cryptocurrency activity on those machines.
According to a report by security news provider CSO, the trove of data included internal emails, payment invoices and product descriptions. Among the products listed in a slideshow prepared by CSO are computer monitoring programs that, among other capabilities, can view “cryptocurrency transactions”, naming bitcoin and litecoin specifically.
The three products, which offer surveillance tools for the Mac OSX, Linux and Windows systems, enable licensees to monitor activity on a computer affected by the spyware. Users can capture files and email, record sound using the microphone and track the position of the device, among other functionalities.
Hacking Team’s reputation stems largely from its association with repressive governments, to which it provides technology that enables hacking, mass surveillance and data collection.
The leaked files show that the company counts US agencies among its clientele – the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Department of Defense and the Drug Enforcement Agency, in particular – as well as Saudi Arabia, Oman, Azerbaijan, Turkey, Sudan and other regimes.
Employee Christian Pozzi later took to Twitter to denounce the hack, accusing those behind the release of lying and stating that the firm was working with law enforcement officials. Pozzi later deleted his account.
that cybersecurity researchers analyzing the released files have already identified several significant exploits developed by Hacking Team.
Images via CSO, Shutterstock
The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups. As part of their compensation, certain CoinDesk employees, including editorial employees, may receive exposure to DCG equity in the form of stock appreciation rights, which vest over a multi-year period. CoinDesk journalists are not allowed to purchase stock outright in DCG.